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Topic: evolution of a doodle  (Read 2490 times)
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bunsenhoneydew13
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« on: March 18, 2009 09:25:43 PM »

Short story:  being the kinesthetic learner that I am, I tend to doodle a lot.  I picked out one of my favorites and (eventually) made this:


Longer story:  I wanted to make this one large, but didn't have a suitable canvas.  I wasn't exactly willing to shell out almost eighty bucks for a large, prestretched one, so I ended up at the damaged/discounted foam board section.  I bought a large piece for three dollars, took it home, and doctored it up with black duct tape and some sewing notions (antique-looking rings).  I taped up the sides as well (to hide the little dents).  Then, I roughly sketched out my doodle on the taped board:


I made up a gallon of art paste and proceeded to papier mache thin "ropes" and twists of newspaper onto the board.  They stand out about half an inch to an inch from the base surface of the board.  This took FOREVER, and I ended up with about five layers of paper.  All the paper kind of warped the board a bit as it was drying, so I helped it keep its shape with random dumbbells and weights on the edges and corners (just a sidenote in case someone is going to attempt to paint on foam board.)  I also made a little heart-shaped "apple" for my tree.  Then, the whole thing was painted over with white acrylic as a sort of primer. 


I painted the spirals in black, then painted the whole thing without a plan.  I used pieces from a Butterfly Watcher's Handbook that I had lying around to collage the background of the sky.  The leaves and root system are just layers upon layers of paint; some were mixed with different mediums to increase the transparency of the paint.  I poured some paint/liquid medium into the crevices in the "trunk" of the tree.  These puddles proceeded to crack a bit; even though this wasn't intentional, I like the effect.  Everything else is coated in gloss super heavy gel medium mixed with different shades of paint...it has some great 3D texture that pictures just didn't capture.  I then covered the spirals in this silver-leaf fluid, which dries super quickly.  Finally, I buffed the silver leaf until it had an antique-type luster (took forever, but I recommend it...it worked beautifully.)

This is a blurry picture, but it captures some of the colors really well:


The apple is covered in crimson paint mixed with acrylic medium gloss gel, which is further mixed with little glass beads for an interesting texture. 


This is a closeup of some of the pieces of the book:


Now it's done and just needs to be sealed!  Hooray!  Cheesy
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whiteiris717
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2009 09:41:11 PM »

Wow!  That is so amazing looking...I'm speechless.  Hitting this rocks...
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lilymaid7
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2009 09:46:11 PM »

Fabulous.  I love all the textures you incorporated.
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2009 09:48:42 PM »

This looks awesome! I love to see the evolution of a craft or art piece... and thanks for the tute! I'm going to try my hand at this paper technique once I can get to the craft store Smiley This rocks!
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« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2009 09:50:38 PM »

awesome!
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« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2009 10:20:44 PM »

I freakin' love this!
The colors are awesome - like stained glass.
I love the collage elements and the paper mache roping is brilliant!
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esarina
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2009 01:37:03 AM »

Wow, it's gorgeous!
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pinkypurple
« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2009 03:51:33 AM »

This is gorgeous and totally rocks!
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« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2009 06:18:13 AM »

Beautiful piece of art! Rockin'!
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« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2009 12:56:06 PM »

Oh.my.gosh.  Fabulous piece of art.  I love it.

I need to try this technique. 
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« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2009 02:39:53 PM »

I am so wisting this

I love it..in fact I may be prepared to come to your house to steal it
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« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2009 09:21:19 PM »

Thanks everyone for your support and kind words!  I definitely think that everybody should try doing this; it's a super-easy way to get great texture and height in your structural or mixed-media projects without using up a lot of more expensive art supplies.  I mean, honestly...I used free newspaper that other people in the house were finished with, a $3.00 box of art paste powder, and a $3.00 foam board in addition to what I already had, so this was the $6 art project...and I still have paper and paste to make more stuff.  Let me know if you do make a mixed-media piece like this one...I'd love to see it!  Cheesy
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rainbow_jazziepup
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2009 01:55:51 PM »

This is a totally awesome project
my friend is doing something like this for her year 11 art assignment....but we are meant to appropriate from someone elses artwork...so i was wondering if you could give details...name size, your name etc.
thanks in advance
Rachel=]
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mmurray82
« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2009 06:24:47 AM »

beautiful!   
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« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2009 12:18:18 PM »

This is SO cool! I think I have most of the things you mentioned, maybe I'll try to make something big like this. I've never made anything to hang up at my apartment...

Could you create a supply list? Thank you!
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« Reply #15 on: April 16, 2009 06:57:00 PM »

Could you create a supply list? Thank you!

Sure, though my disclaimer is that I'm not sure how helpful it will be to you.  But here goes:

1.  Newspapers (I use some black and white, some colored sections (like the Sunday comics)...so you can tell how many layers you've applied, and if the layers are even
2.  art paste powder (I use Elmers.  It comes in a little box, costs less than $4, and makes an entire gallon of paste when you add it to water in a big bucket and stir it up.  The resulting gooey paste lasts for a long time if you keep it in an airtight container.)
3.  something to form the basis of your piece.  I used a dented/damaged foam board, but if you're going for something a bit more permanent, you might use a big canvas board/piece of wood/old vinyl sign/etc.  I think that something more stable might be better.
4.  some way to hang your piece.  I used two 2-inch rings used for sewing purposes...they're antiqued and bronze in color.  I also used black duct tape and fashioned loops to hold the rings onto the board and mask the ugly edges of the board (I hope that makes sense.)
5.  your personal collage/mixed media elements.  (I used pieces of an old, ratty paperback; various acrylic mediums, like liquid/pouring medium, super heavy gloss gel, and medium gel; acrylic paints.  You could use magazine pictures, pretty papers or fabrics, ribbons, dried flowers, old jewelry, glitter, plastic army men, mod podge, whatever you like.)
6.  paintbrushes, palette knives, or other things to apply paint (like your fingers, or plastic silverware) to surface
7.  antiquing fluid or gel.  These can be kind of complicated and expensive (gold leaf, for example).  I like the kind that comes in a little metal tube that you just apply and buff to a luster.
8.  sealant or shellac, if you want.  These can be brush-on or spray-on, and they can help to preserve your piece.  These are totally optional.

Basically, I just went with it.  Mixed media is always fun because you can experiment freely.  If you don't like it, just wait for it to dry and paint over the part you don't like!  The papier mache-ing is the most annoying part of the whole process, because you really should let the thing dry in between every 3 layers or so.  Oh, and if you do use a foam board, something about the art paste or the shrinking process of the drying paper causes the board to warp a bit.  You can try weighing down the corners/edges to help decrease that. 

Let me know if you need clarification or have questions.  Best of luck to you!  You should post your finished product on craftster so that we can see it...I'd love to see what you come up with.
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« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2009 10:11:23 AM »

I wisted your tree too!  I love the fact that it is 3D!!  It is beautiful! Shocked
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Spiffyhink
« Reply #17 on: May 16, 2009 07:16:49 PM »

This looks like SO MUCH FUN! It's definitely going on my to-do list. It sounds like with a few modifications, it would make a great project to do with the kids, too.

Gorgeous!
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« Reply #18 on: May 24, 2009 08:53:39 PM »

I absolutely love this piece. The colors and and textures are beautiful. I adore the blue sky collage with butterflies and newsprint.
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« Reply #19 on: June 07, 2009 06:08:18 PM »

For the buckling, some book of painting tips I read said you can make an X from corner to corner with masking tape on the back of a piece of watercolor paper to stop it from wrinkling. I haven't tried it, and I also don't know how it would translate to foam, but it might be worth a try for anyone who is using this tute on cardstock or something.
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« Reply #20 on: June 08, 2009 05:27:07 PM »


I adore the blue sky collage with butterflies and newsprint.


Thanks!  Actually, the "newsprint" that you see is really still part of a Butterfly Watcher's Handbook that was in sad shape.  I used pieces of copy that had cool stories or poetic somethings on them, so that it's like art within art...I love doing that.


For the buckling, some book of painting tips I read said you can make an X from corner to corner with masking tape on the back of a piece of watercolor paper to stop it from wrinkling. I haven't tried it, and I also don't know how it would translate to foam, but it might be worth a try for anyone who is using this tute on cardstock or something.


Perhaps!  I think that some of the paste that I used in my papier mache ended up sinking into my foam board, and then the paper shrank a bit as it dried and pulled the foam into a different (not flat) shape.  Oh well...it definitely adds to the character of the piece, and for it being as big as it is and as cheap as it was, I'm definitely not complaining  Cheesy  If you end up trying it, let me know how it works out!
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